Nate Slawson


I named thirteen folders
on my computer’s desktop
URGENT but the folders
have remained empty
as I cannot archive
urgency any more than
I can draw you a diagram
of how Thursdays wreck me


We agreed on one thing
today we believe in failing
because failing is not
an abstract idea
it is a fact of living
within the present tense
& if I could talk with you
in a place that is not this
place we might agree
about more important
dilemmas like how come
we are growing apart
when what we were originally
was a future


At lunch we agree to
talk about everything but
our night last night
& the way we clung to
the porch light going
off & on & how I
felt thinking then
that you were into me
the way I am into you
but you got cold
& I wiped the sweat
from my forehead
it’s almost like we
were meant to be


When I was alone
after work in my car
I put on the same
playlist I had already
listened to for eleven
straight days & I
started to sing
the windows down
my heart pulling
you closer in
all the songs start
like someone else’s
bad news


Those days when I think
I do not want
to be alive
are the same days
everyone else calls
the weekend
it’s the weekends
that almost kill me
because there is no
one in this space
but me & I trace
the cubicle walls
with my thumb
I sit in your chair
pull out a pair
of scissors
& cut off most
of my hair
but the inevitable
is you will see me
again on Monday
& I will see you &
we will act as if
nothing happened
this weekend
or ever



Nate Slawson is the author of Panic Attack, USA (YesYes Books, 2011). He lives in the NW suburbs of Chicago.